Sun Ovens for Afghanistan

Update from Greenstar

July 13, 2002

Below is an email message, with photos, from Walt Ratterman of Knightsbridge. This message, and others in this string, have been edited and consolidated somewhat to make a complex story a little easier to follow.

The Knightsbridge team is bringing two large Sun Ovens and a huge assortment of other health and education materials to Afghanistan. More information on the work of Knightsbridge International and reports from the field in Afghanistan can be found at

More updates to follow...


Sent: Saturday, July 13, 2002 1:26 AM
Subject: Knightsbridge / Tzu Chi - Mission to Afghanistan

We have spent the last 48 hours working to obtain permission for our trucks to cross the border [between Uzbekistan and Afghanistan], and making arrangements for transportation and security to be available when we walk across the border. As late as yesterday afternoon, we were still being refused permission from the embassy to support the movement of our trucks across the Friendship Bridge, and we still had not made secure arrangements for our personal transportation once in the country.

But, finally, things fell together at the last hours of the day yesterday. By demonstrating a healthy measure of completely unorthodox stubbornness at the embassy at closing time, and after having the document thrown at us across the desk several times, we finally got their stamp on the last document required to clear our trucks and the drivers. (No one was hospitalized, and no furniture had been rearranged, so this can be deemed a hard fought, unqualified success.)

We then made contact with people who have offered to help us once we are on the other side of the bridge with transportation and security. We will meet them later this weekend in Termed, just on the Uzbekistan side of the bridge.

The convoy of nine large trucks of aid supplies left Tashkent yesterday afternoon, headed first for the Friendship Bridge, where they should arrive by Monday morning. We will be there to meet them. After we all cross the bridge, we are on a whirlwind trip to get to each destination ahead of the trucks, meet the officials in the respective towns, get set up for distribution, and unload the trucks.



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